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​The Legalization of Sex Work / Prostitution Act
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Date: April 24, 2022


The proposed "Legalization of Sex Work / Prostitution Act' is one position regarding the legal status of sex-work in a new Black nation-state. Different proposals and amendments are welcomed. 

As will be outlined in the act, it is assumed that sex work cannot simply be abolished by a legal act as a practical matter.  

At this time, it appears there are three basic approaches to the legal question of sex-work: 1) Abolishing prostitution completely, as exemplified in Sweden, which criminalizes the purchase—though not the sale—of sex. 2) Legalize and regulate sex work, and 3) Decriminalize sex-work and leave it largely unregulated.  

It is acknowledged here that there are serious debates to be had on a legal/programmatic approach to sex-work. These debates are not substitutes for the moral and ideological dimensions of the equation. That arena of struggle is the civic role and responsibility of the Vesey Republic's dynamic Commons, and their elective Estates Parliament. 

We would also remind our readers that resolution of this issue should not be viewed as an either-or proposition. 

So, for example, where Black feminists and womanists may be divided on this issue, the Vesey Republic's Commons would likely take an intense interest in what law the proposed Women-Led Autonomous Region adopts on sex-work. The law adopted by the WLAP would be legally binding in the WLAR, irrespective of the actions taken by the national Vesey Republic Estates Parliament.   

In this instance, we could conceivably have two different legislative acts implemented.  

The "Legalization of Sex Work / Prostitution Act' 

With the Vesey Republic's establishment, removing oppressive laws that limit and discourage women, men, LGBTQ, and non-binary individuals from seeking employment opportunities and life choices, will constitute a significant first step to reconceptualize social stigmas and practices associated with prostitution or sex-work. 

Protecting the public health and safety of its citizens and individuals employed as sex workers is the Vesey Republic’s paramount concern.

Understanding that prostitution is a practice that has flourished to a greater or lesser degree in all environments throughout the ages, it is judged that best way to safeguard the health and welfare of the general public and sex workers is to legalize prostitution and regulate the component structures that traditionally support the 'sex industry.' 

Ensuring clean working conditions in venues for sex-workers and patrons, combatting violent abuses, and affording public protections are critical to regulating and creating a safe and healthy sex industry is the remit of this act.

For the purposes of adopting a legislative act, the sex-work industry is broadly defined as including the categories of private clubs and escort agencies. While 'sex-work' is referred to as prostitution, it may also include, adult video performers, phone sex operators, webcam models, and dancers in strip clubs.

To that end proposes the following measures 

- All businesses seeking to operate an establishment in the sex-work industry will be required to apply for licensure.

- To receive a license, establishments must submit a business plan that details measures for providing safe, hygienic working conditions for their sex workers and ensure that they are healthy and independent. 

- Additional licensing requirements may include proper business administration, rental conditions, intake, and supervision. 

- Sex workers must register with public authorities and test regularly for infectious diseases.   

- Illegal prostitution would constitute all forms of prostitution requiring licensure but operating without a license. This can include prostitution that takes place in private residences (if multiple sex workers are employed in the same house) or in massage parlors, and certain types of illegal escort services.

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